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Scripture Reading: Jeremiah 26:1-8
Jeremiah: The Man and His Message
1. Jeremiah was one of the great prophets of Israel.
a. Name means Jehovah is High, or Exalted of God.
b. Born a priest, called by God to be a prophet, Jer 1:1, 4-5.
c. Active as a prophet in Jerusalem (627-586 BC), then Egypt several years (total of about 50 yrs).
2. A treacherous time in the history of Judah (short-lived reforms of Josiah): Conspiracy, injustice, heathenism, luxury and oppression of poor. This was the environment into which God sent Jeremiah to announce His judgments against His people, Jer 1:16.
3. Jeremiah teaches us tremendous lessons in the face of trials, Jas 1:2-4.
I. JEREMIAH THE MAN.
A. Jeremiah was a Man of Faith.
1. Forsook marriage and common social interaction at God’s instruction, 16:1-9.
2. When Jerusalem was besieged he bought a field, demonstrating his faith that God would again bless the land, 32:6-7, 9, 14-15.
3. He saw beyond the tragedy of exile to restoration to land, 31:23-28; and, ultimate restoration under new covenant, 31:31-34 (Heb 8:8-13).
* 4. We must stand fast in faith. 2 Cor 1:24; 1 Cor 16:13 (Rom 8:31)
B. Jeremiah was a Gentle Man, cf. Jer 11:19.
1. Set in contrast to his message (condemnation and judgment).
a. Sympathy seen in his sorrow over the sins of the people, cf. 8:18; 23:9.
b. Sympathy while speaking God’s judgments, 4:19; 8:21-22; 13:15-17.
* 2. We need gentleness when addressing sinners and their sin. Matt 5:5, 7; Gal 6:1; 2 Tim 2:24
C. Jeremiah was a Courageous Man, Jer 1:18 (15:20); 18:18-20.
1. Threatened with death, mocked and imprisoned (26:8-9; 38:2-6).
a. Accused of being a traitor (37:13-15); a false prophet and a troublemaker (29:24-29).
b. Called a fanatic (by family and friends, 11:19-23).
2. Courageous because God was with him, 1:19 (15:20-21).
* 3. We need courage in the face of temptations, false allegations and enemies of the cross. 1 Cor 16:13; Eph 6:10; Heb 13:5-6
II. JEREMIAH THE PROPHET, Jer 1:4-9.
A. His Message, Jer 1:10.
1. Denounced sin and announced God’s judgment (God’s wrath), 1:16; 16:10-13.
2. Assured a future restoration (God’s mercy), 46:27-28; 29:10.
* 3. Principle is true today. 2 Tim 4:2-3; Rom 2:1-4; 11:22
B. His Manner, Jer 1:17-19.
1. Urgent (he had to preach), 20:9 (2 Tim 4:2).
2. Decisive (he preached what needed to be heard), cf. 37:16-17 (Acts 24:25).
-“He did not succumb to the temptation to tailor God’s word to fit the individual but rather sought to bring the individual into harmony with the will of God.” (Smith, p. 68)
3. Consistent: His message and his life agreed, cf. 1 Tim 4:16.
* 4. God’s servant today, 2 Tim 2:24-26; 3:16-17.
III. JEREMIAH AND JESUS.
Prophet & Priest (1:1, 5) The Prophet & High Priest (Ac 3:22; Heb 3:1)
Personal Sorrow (15:18) Man of Sorrows (Isa 53:3)
Wept over Sins (9:1) Wept over Jerusalem (Lk 19:41)
Despised & Rejected (20:10) Despised & Rejected (Isa 53:3)
Sacrifice (16:1-9) Sacrifice (Heb 10:12)
Intercession (18:20) Intercession (Heb 7:25)
Spoke Truth w/o Reservation (20:7-9) Spoke Truth w/o Reservation (Jno 12:49)
1. “Jeremiah’s harsh message of judgment delivered with tears never won a convert. Such a message was not only unwelcome to the nation whose 70 years’ captivity Jeremiah predicted, but totally rejected by a backsliding people. Yet ‘the grandeur of his character appears in his fearlessness and faithfulness and passion for souls. He faced misrepresentation, persecution, the dungeon and death, rather than keep back one word of truth.’” (Lockyer, All the Books and Chapters of the Bible, 177)
2. Jeremiah is surely among those “of whom the world was not worthy!” Heb 11:38